Bachmann accuses Perry camp of 'stealth' political attack
October 28th, 2011
08:54 PM ET
11 years ago

Bachmann accuses Perry camp of 'stealth' political attack

(CNN) - Michele Bachmann accused Rick Perry's presidential campaign Friday of a "stealth" political attack - a charge the Texas governor's campaign flat out denied.

"If Gov. Perry has something to say to me, he can come out to the debates and say it," Bachmann said in an interview with CNN. "But this is egg on the face unfortunately for the Perry campaign."

At issue: tea party sponsor American Majority's urging for Bachmann to drop out of the presidential race. On Thursday, the group's executive director Matt Robbins told CNN that Bachmann's White House bid "is not a serious presidential campaign." His comments coincided with a blog statement from American Majority president Ned Ryun, who outlined reasons why "it's time for Michele Bachmann to go."

Among other claims, Ryun wrote that Bachmann's emphasis on social issues was damaging the tea party movement.

In an interview with CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer," Bachmann fired back, targeting the Texas governor.

"Well, of course, we found out that this is really a misstep on the part of the Perry campaign because these are Perry supporters that came out," Bachmann told CNN. "This was a clumsy move."

Bachmann continued: "This was meant to be a stealth move to make it look like this was tea party."

"It certainly isn't a blow to my campaign because I've had nonstop support coming out of the woodwork from tea partiers all across the country ever since this came out," she said.

When asked whether Bachmann had evidence that the Perry campaign was involved in American Majority's statements, Bachmann replied, "No."

"This is something that people have told us," Bachmann said.

Both American Majority and Perry's campaign deny they were working together.

"We learned about this from news reports today. We were not aware or involved in the group's action," Perry campaign communications director Ray Sullivan said in a statement to CNN.

The group's president called Bachmann's assertion "bizarre."

"I have no connection with the Perry campaign," Ryun told CNN, although he did publicly express support for Perry's tax plan revealed earlier this week.

Ryun also said it's "wildly illegal" for his nonprofit group to endorse a candidate.

"American Majority does not endorse. I'm not working for or with any campaign," Ryun said.

"It goes back to let's focus on the substance of what this whole debate was about to begin with. Where are your substantive ideas to actually advance the ideas of the tea party movement?" he added.

–Follow Shannon Travis on Twitter: @ShanTravisCNN

Watch The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer weekdays at 4pm to 6pm ET and Saturdays at 6pm ET. For the latest from The Situation Room click here.

soundoff (357 Responses)
  1. John B

    Here's an idea Bachman. Stop throwing money away and go back to work.

    October 29, 2011 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  2. hypatia

    She reminds me of those twisted mean girls in High School. When they don't get their way, they spread lies and claim victimization.

    October 29, 2011 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  3. Eruditone

    What's especially funny is that, while the tanking economy is getting all the headlines let's not forget some of the other aspects to the job all these circus clowns seem to want. Not only will they represent the U.S on the world stage, etc. but as President they'd be Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces. Can you IMAGINE Michelle in that capacity? Coupled with all the rest of her nonsense, the obvious answer is that this little fruitcake just needs to go sit in a corner someplace and shut up. Perry became Governor not because he's better but by sticking a fork in the eye of any opponent...and that's what he's trying to do now. It doesn't work like that on the National stage, Rick.

    October 29, 2011 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  4. hawk

    Perry said that it was Obamas fault.

    October 29, 2011 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  5. Clint, Wa.

    When asked whether Bachmann had evidence that the Perry campaign was involved in American Majority's statements, Bachmann replied, "No."

    "This is something that people have told us," Bachmann said.

    This women really has a problem with things that other people tell her, does she ever think to check the facts first, or just go to war based on what other people tell her?

    October 29, 2011 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  6. hawk

    Perry's camp said that it was a lie, nothing new here because i have never seen or heard a republican that did not lie. that and fear mongering is all they know how to do.

    October 29, 2011 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  7. ScottyD

    It is really and truly sad that this is the level of politics. Not one of these people praises the President and gracefully tells the nation how they can augment our current situation as a country. They fight like little children, as selfish as can be, and don't understand the utter brevity of where we are. If you are to gain the respect of the people you say you truly want to represent, concentrate on issues and move forward like a cannon. Do not point fingers for the is lateral. You need to be moving vertically in a trajectory pattern.

    Oh, and do not bash the President that is struggling to keep this nation together. It is not only poor form, but creates unneeded tension in an already tense environment.

    October 29, 2011 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  8. roscoe

    The race to the bottom continues. Which one will hit bottom of the septic tank first? Hard to call.

    October 29, 2011 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  9. Winston5

    She so crazy!

    October 29, 2011 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  10. Tex71

    If Bachmann says it, it can't be true. Simple as that. The woman is a compulsive liar...kind of reminds you of that other compulsive liar from Wasilla, who blessedly has been out of the news cycle for a while.

    October 29, 2011 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  11. edpeters101

    You tell em Michele. Another one of Perry's dirty ways of running for office! The guy is a complete coward!!!

    October 29, 2011 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  12. Thad

    Who are her surporters? And what woodwork are they coming from? I think its time for the tea baggers to hang it up. Their whole movement has self- destruted with these clowns in the limelight.

    October 29, 2011 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  13. Disgustipated

    Stupid attcking stupid, I see nothing wrong with this.

    October 29, 2011 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  14. jmyer

    It is possible that Perry did say something to rile Michelle and the media up, but we all know that Michelle Bachman is in no way qualified for the presidency, just like Perry. Perry is known to fight dirty during a campaign, scare everyone else away, but Michelle says some things that are just out right crazy and untruthful. She won't admit that she isn't going to be the next president and probably will fight and blame others right to the bitter end. She is very aggressive, so is Perry, they make quite a pair, but certainly not ready for the big time.

    October 29, 2011 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  15. Bill

    Just an observation. The Republican race was fairly civil until Perry got in the race. I for one do not like the guy. I do not think he has the "presence" or "temperment" to be president, and I think that another president coming out of Texas will not be well received by the electorate in 2012. While it may be time for Bachmann to bow out, it is past time for Perry to do so.

    October 29, 2011 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  16. klarg

    Whisper campaigns are SOP for the GOP

    October 29, 2011 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  17. Aezel

    Oh Michele would like to think it's all cloak and daggers. Unfortunately the problem with her campaign is much simpler: she's as dumb as they come and a bad candidate.

    October 29, 2011 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |

    "It's time for Michele Bachmann to go," Ned Ryun, president and founder of a Tea Party group he named "American Majority," wrote on the group's blog. Ryun said that Bachmann, the founder of the House tea party caucus, should pull the plug on her campaign out of respect for the activists she purports to represent.

    "Every day the campaign flounders, it risks hurting the credibility of the movement," Ryun wrote.

    "It is clear that the campaign has become less about reform and more about her personal effort to stay relevant and sell books," he added.

    Her former followers do not want Bachman to further her campaign – they want her to go home! She is an embarrassment to her state, followers, all women, and of course the country!

    October 29, 2011 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |

    The wingnut/teabagger trainwreck implosion continues full speed ahead.

    October 29, 2011 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  20. Good stuff

    Perry is as dirty a politician as they come. He slanders his opponents. He spreads lies and misinformation because he knows he has nothing to offer. He hopes voters will see him as the least horrible of all the choices. Look at how he ran his gubernatorial campaigns. He is dirty, dirty, dirty.

    October 29, 2011 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  21. Noodle Nose Johnson

    Neither Perry nor Bachmann will ever see the inside of the White House unless they buy a ticket for the tour.

    October 29, 2011 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  22. Marques


    Rick Perry most likely is deeply involved in this controversy. Perry by nature is a VERY CONTROVERSIAL individual. From the moment he enters the republican race we know he was their to create controversies. Do we forget how he kicked off his campaign? he started by asserting that if Ben Bernarke the Fed.Reserve's chairman was living in Texas he knows what he would have done to him if he seeks to stimulate the economy.

    In essence, he kicked off his campaign with a threat to someone's who simply trying to get our economy growing. He is a very controversial figure and it's not even worth it to waste our time talking about him. Of course! Bachmann should drop out of the race since she's going no where. Perry, however, should drop out as well. It's obvious that he also is going now where.

    October 29, 2011 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  23. Stephanie Palmer

    While I do think that someone is behind Perry and spreading the idea that Bachmann needs to get out, I do agree with the sentiment. On the other hand I think Perry should get out as well. Apparently most voters agree with me. It looks to me like the Koch bros. have backed the wrong horse. The voters aren't as stupid as they thought they were. I'm actually surprised the Republicans are even running a candidate. I can't even believe that Boehner, McConnell and Cantor are so afraid of the idiot Tea Party that they actually spout their drivel. Cowards all, and that includes all the contenders.

    October 29, 2011 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  24. a4mrtheist

    Let them keep bickering among them selves and watch them loose it all. Bunch of conservative, religious hipoctrits.

    October 29, 2011 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  25. NVa Native

    Weak – every one of them. Just like the GOP and their followers.

    October 29, 2011 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
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